Probably the most famous Disney fairy of them all has a weird place in the world of Disney, let alone amongst Disney Princesses (of which she isn’t, though she’s sometimes included by fans). Given that this is Disney, famous for their adaptations with fairies in them, Tinkerbell was prominent and popular enough to be a character up for the Disney Princess franchise, and yet seemed to instead have a place amongst the fairies of the Disney world and not the Princesses.
Before the launch of the Disney Fairies line up Tinkerbell actually was part of the Disney Princess lineup, with dolls and other merchandise released under the Disney Princess name. However with the creation of the Disney Fairies franchise in 2005 Tinkerbell. Why the new lineup for Tinkerbell? It can be argued that since Tinkerbell is neither a Princess nor human, this made his position in the Disney Princess lineup already quite a tenuous one. Furthermore, she’s one of Disney’s most recognisable characters, appearing in multiple items of merchandise and is arguably more famous than the lead character of he first film (Peter Pan).
This put her in quite a unique position, one which gave Disney an opportunity to create a new franchise based on different criteria. Another strong argument supporting this is that of Tinkerbell’s characterisation. She’s known as a ‘tinker’ fairy, one that fixes things: a female magical engineer, if you will. This makes her one of Disney’s first headlining female characters that has an actual job beyond ruling a kingdom. Tinkerbell is an indispensable part of a greater whole as a Tinker fairy in Pixie Hollow. Her fairy friends created for the franchise follow suit; each has a job or a utility which they specialise in, and every Disney Fairies story is effectively a tale about young women banding together to save the day.
Given she has wings, she’s reliant on no one else but herself to get around. Even though Tinkerbell had no voice in the original film, she was one of the most active and animated characters; traits which explain her great popularity. Her magic and independence have made her such a fan favourite that it isn’t surprising that she held such a place in the popular Disney Princess franchise before being given her own. Irrespective of whether or not you consider her appropriate for a place in the Princess franchise (a position I personally don’t take), her determination, uniqueness and interesting character well explain why so many fans liked to include her as part of the Princess lineup.
On the back of Tinkerbell, I’ll be reviewing the other great female from the Peter Pan series, Wendy, next week: see you then!